Tuesday, September 29, 2009


The first and the last time we look at something tend to be similar, particularly when one believes that it could be the last one. When we look at something for the first time the astonishment is probably caused by the singularity of what we face. Of course, first times are unlike anything else. But when we think we are looking at something for the last time, although we can never be sure, we try to recover that intensity. We go away with the head turned back, as if it didn’t want to go. But it doesn’t help. There is only one first time. It happened to me at the Metropolitan museum while looking at a painting by Vermeer. It wasn’t the only time, but it was the most intense one. In fact, now that there is only few days left before I leave, this insight becomes more and more powerful.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Middle Ages

Does New York looks like a Middle Ages city? I think we must consider two aspects if we assert something like this because at first sight we can say nothing farther than that notion. However, I want to hightlight the contrast between open spaces and dark streets, shadows and lights on the one hand, and the city like a big market on the other. To my eyes, people move and run between shadows and lights looking for their own grail.

But I've seen something pretty curious: in Manhattan, the sight get lost in the space. You can see the skyline almost in every avenue, the horizon in Times Square indeed. The design of a medieval city is like a labyrinth, it seems as if chance or God's will traced the map (sometimes it seems the same thing). Most part of Manhattan is exactly a grid, so your sight can get lost in space and then it feels like New York has not weight. In the Middle Ages nothing has real weight except the Church. But the building of the church itself, forced you to look up there. And then, the sight got lost at the end. You find the sky, the real city god traced . By the way, Wall Street does the same!
Ok, we must think what kind of god we can find up there.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

words for a friend

When I was 18 years old I saw Manhattan, the Woody Allen film. I was in the cinema with a very close friend and when the movie ended we said, “extraordinary”, ‘excellent”, and blah blah blah. Today I can say I didn’t understand anything, neither did my friend. But we found something special in the movie, the atmosphere… the contrast between black and white. The movie had a smell, really. In that time we were reading Henry Miller. My friend always talked about him. And thanks to my friend I really got to know Miller. ¨We have to go to New York,¨ we said when we were younger. My friend never wrote a line, he studied music, he went to Brazil three years later and with time became one of the most important percussionists in Argentina and Brazil and, in some instruments like berimbau, he was the best in the world. Well, my friend was Ramiro Musotto and he died yesterday. I want to dedicate these words to him.

Friday, September 11, 2009

common words

Everybody knows New York is one of the most exciting cities in the world. Everybody finds something familiar in this city. When we watch the world in two dimensions, I mean, in the screen (TV shows, movies, photographs) New York appears continually. If one man of five is Chinese, one image of five is New York. Three days ago the screen that I know opened its third dimension. It’s pretty curious but this city ends up with common places, but it couldn’t with words. We can only say “wonderful’, “extraordinary”, “beautiful” and thousand other onomatopoeic words.